Hello! I'm Suzannah, a serious DIYer. Follow along with my DIY fixer upper house renovations, sewing and crafty projects, real food recipes, and de-stressing goals.
I co-host the Your Home Story podcast and believe you can love your home just the way it is, AND have the power to design and make big changes to make it better.
I'm also the author of DIY Wardrobe Makeovers!
Mom to Otto born April 2018 and Lucy born August 2020!

Saturday picnic dress!

It's a gorgeous, sunny Saturday here in Portland, Oregon, and I'm still wearing summery clothes.  I just made a cute, summery dress out of some fun vintage fabric I got at Goodwill.  I used some vintage ric rac to trim it, too, since it was looking a little plain.  It's a modified version of Simplicity 2579--this is the first time I've used the pattern and I'm not happy with the fit.  The waist was 8" too big (seriously) and the straps were about 1" too short!  I made it work, but I think the fit of this dress is just not the cute, snug-fitting look I'm used to, with gathering below the bust.  I also cut down the back a lot so it's not so high--I guess I just wanted to show more skin than the pattern?  Puzzling.  I wouldn't have designed it that way...
The dumpy fit is especially puzzling since it's sold as an evening wear pattern.
Anyway, with my $1.99 piece of fabric from Goodwill, and some vintage baby ric rac I had on hand, here's what I came up with!
It's a cute fabric, white with black stripes and little red and yellow roses.  Vintage from... I dunno when, but it's very sweet.  It makes me want to go outside with a picnic blanket and basket!  I do hope to enjoy the sun for the next few weeks until it gets to be fall.
Are any of you enjoying the last bits of summer this weekend?


  1. This is a perfect dress for so many occasions, I adore it!

  2. Anonymous9/11/2010

    I think adding a crinoline would give it a kicking silhouette. The skirt just needs a little more oomph!

  3. The red ricrac was the perfect accent.

  4. I actually really like this dress! It looks like it would be very flattering on most body types. We are in fall mode over here...went apple picking today at a local farm. So delicious!

  5. Wll you made it work. How did you fix the straps? They don't look to short at all. Did you just cut out the pieces again?

  6. Looks pretty cute to me! All it needs is a necklace, strappy sandals and a picnic basket...

  7. Lovely dress! Here in Wales we hope to get a bit of an Indian summer so fingers crossed I'll be able to wear my summer clothes for a wee bit longer! x

  8. It's a very cute dress and the fabric is lovely! It's picnic weather here, too, after a very autumny beginning of September.

  9. That is beautiful and so flattering. Well done!

  10. Anonymous9/12/2010

    That's adorable! I would wear it everywhere.

  11. oh it is gorgeous!
    We are starting to get some colder winds her in Denmark, though I rather enjoy it compared to the stifling hot it was earlier this summer!

  12. Thanks, everyone!
    @Katarina, I actually just used a scant 1/4" seam allowance on the straps and sewed them together by hand. It made them just barely long enough!

  13. I love the fabric! The dress really turned out cute even though you had so much trouble with the pattern. Good job!

  14. I love it, it looks gorgeous!

  15. Anonymous9/12/2010

    very cute - definitely invokes a picnic! I am enjoying this second sunny day here in PDX.... better soak up this sun while we can!!!!

  16. Well, for all of the trouble the pattern was, it sure turned out cute!!

  17. Very nice. If I were you I would enjoy the weathet and really grab that blanket and go out on a picnic!

  18. I couldn't tell that the dress didn't fit well. I think you did excellently! The pattern and especially the fabric is lovely. Well done!

  19. Very Cute Dress! I love the shape though knowing you had to adjust the pattern I don't know that I would try the same pattern. I'm a lot more confident refashioning thrifted clothes then trying to adjust a pattern. Looks great though! Makes me want to start making summer dresses :) if only the dreary oregon rain would stop!

    1. Thanks! It's not a tricky pattern, I'm sure you could do it. The rain will stop eventually!




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